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Full text of "Verdict On India"

236                                      VEKDICT  OX INDIA

tioix of some of the amazing fetes and carnivals with which they
still entertain their subjects, who take endless delight in these
affairs. But the States, as we have seen, have a higher function
than as purveyors of circuses. It may be salutary, in these days,
to recall what Lord Curzon said about them. There have been
many changes in the world since he was Viceroy, but not so many
changes that his words have lost their weight. Curzon was not
exactly a fool, nor was he an alarmist, and he knew his India as
few Indians. let alone Englishmen, have ever known it. This was
his judgment :

*The Princes of India sustain the virility, and save from extinc-
tion the pieturesqueness of ancient and noble races. They show
in their persons that illustrious lineage has not ceased to implant
noble and chivalrous ideas, fine standards of public spirit and
private courtesy. With the loss of these, if ever they be allowed
to disappear, Indian society would go to pieces like a dismasted
vessel in

EDUCATION
To discuss this subject in all its ramifications would require
many volumes ; the best we can do is to indicate a few of the
*high spots.5
There are two schools of thought about education in India ; the
first contends that it should play handmaiden to economics on
the principle that it is useless to preach to children with empty
stomachs ; the second maintains that it should have priority over
all other charges, since only by raising the peasant's standard of
intelligence can you teach him the sort of things which will enable
him to raise his standard of life. Actually, of course, the two
problems are one and indivisible ; to discuss which should be
tackled first is as unprofitable as the old wrangle about the hen
and the egg . . . education costs money and in order to have money
'you must first have education  a truism that applies to nations
as well as to individuals.
Very few people have any conception of the astronomical sums
which will have to be expended before India, as a whole, attains
even a moderate degree of education. After all, to teach letters
to one-fifth of the human race is a task which cannot be under-